Joel Kim Booster Is In A Pit

Episode 16

5th July 2021

The writer, comedian, and actor was in a brutal depressive episode when we spoke with him. Couldn’t write, could tell jokes if they were ones he wrote a long time ago. He could probably act, he said, but his creative life was over in his estimation. Hear what depression sounds like.

Episode notes

It’s tempting to try to look for a reason why Joel Kim Booster, ordinarily a very funny and engaging person, feels dead inside, trapped in a persistent depressive state. His father recently died of COVID. The two hadn’t been very close (Joel’s dad was a conservative Christian, Joel is a gay Hollywood star) but were beginning to reconnect. You could point to the pandemic, which left Joel in an apartment he doesn’t like for extended periods. 

But it’s just as easy to point to things that aren’t especially depressing about Joel’s situation. He’s got movie and TV deals, he’s taping an hour-long Netflix special, he has recently fallen in love, and he’s doing well enough that he’s about to buy a house.

The truth is that any of those factors might influence Joel’s mood and behavior but depression isn’t simple enough to be routinely caused or prevented by one’s fortune in the rest of life. 

Depresh Mode host John Moe says this interview is the strongest representation of what depression is like that he’s done in all his years of interviewing people on the subject.

Visit Joel Kim Booster’s website here. For tour dates, visit his Linktree. Follow Joel Kim Booster on Twitter @ihatejoelkim and on Instagram @ihatejoelkim. Watch his Comedy Central Stand-Up Presents special here.

Thank you to all our listeners who support the show as monthly members of Maximum Fun

Hey, remember, you’re part of Depresh Mode and we want to hear what you want to hear about. What guests and issues would you like to have covered in a future episode? Write us at depreshmode@maximumfun.org.

Help is available right away.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255, 1-800-273-TALK

Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741.

International suicide hotline numbers available here: https://www.opencounseling.com/suicide-hotlines

The Depresh Mode newsletter is available twice a week. Subscribe for free and stay up to date on the show and mental health issues. https://johnmoe.substack.com/

John’s acclaimed memoir, The Hilarious World of Depression, is available here. https://read.macmillan.com/lp/the-hilarious-world-of-depression/

Find the show on Twitter @depreshpod and Instagram @depreshpod.

John is on Twitter @johnmoe.

In this episode...

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  • Joel Kim Booster

About the show

Join host John Moe (The Hilarious World of Depression) for honest, relatable, and, yes, sometimes funny conversations about mental health. Hear from comedians, musicians, authors, actors, and other top names in entertainment and the arts about living with depression, anxiety, and many other common disorders. Find out what they’ve done to address it, what worked, and what didn’t. Depresh Mode with John Moe also features useful insights on mental health issues with experts in the field. It’s honest talk from people who have been there and know their stuff. No shame, no stigma, and maybe a few laughs.

Follow Depresh Mode on Twitter and Instagram.

Logo by Clarissa Hernandez.

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